The principal of a private intermediate college in Gonda district has written to the district magistrate seeking his help to provide police security at the college to stop the “harassment” by a group of youths, following which many students had left the college and a few had sought exemption from attending regular classes.
Nearly 30 students of the co-ed college have reportedly quit so far citing “personal reasons” and around 10 girls have requested the school administration to allow them to appear for exams only as they did not want to visit the college in such a situation.
Following intervention of the district magistrate Saturday, Gonda Superintendent of Police (SP) Gonda SP, Raj Karan Nayyar said he has now asked a circle officer rank official and SHO of a women police station to conduct an inquiry into the reasons behind the students having left the college or refusing to attend the classes. Now, the SP claimed, a special anti-Romeo squad drive had been started in the area.
“There is a big issue in and around our institute. I have been told that there are two groups of youngsters, who move on 15-20 bikes and harass the girls. Some students have left the college due to this. Last year, we rusticated three-four boys from the college, who have also joined these groups,” said the school principal.
“Although most of the girl students and their guardians do not complain in this regard openly, a few of them came to us and requested that as the college administration was not able to provide security to the girls outside the campus, the girls should be exempted from attending regular classes and allowed to attend their final exams while studying from home for the rest of the year,” he added.
The principal added that around 30 girl students had left the college but as they do not want to file a complaint or get into this, only four have cited harassment as the reason. The inter-college is a private institute with over 300 students enrolled, the principal said.
“After Saturday’s police drive, girls are now ready to start coming to the college without fear. In the past, no student wanted to lodge a complaint as they felt it was better to stay silent than getting into legal formalities and also fearing that it may affect their studies. We failed to understand the seriousness of the matter earlier and even when incidents of clashes happened between the groups of youths, we ignored the issue. When some students and guardians came to us recently, we contacted the police and the administration,” the principal added.
Gonda SP Nayyar claimed that he was informed about the issue only on Saturday.
“Our anti-Romeo squad and a Mahila police station team visited the college, where they met the students Saturday and informed them about what they can do in such situations. We are also conducting a special drive in the area against any eve-teasers and anti-social elements. In the past, no information was given to us about such a problem at the college. I want to assure that our anti-Romeo squads are already very much active and doing their job daily,” the SP claimed.
District Magistrate Nitin Bansal said he was informed about the issue recently and that police were looking into it.